We see right through kids. And we know what to do next.

Radiology and diagnostic services at Children’s Minnesota offers a full range of imaging tests that help diagnose an array of health conditions affecting kids — everything from fractures and cardiovascular issues to head injuries and cancer. We work closely with other specialists from every corner of Children’s and beyond to help kids get well.

Technology that fits kids

Kids aren’t just small adults, so our medical equipment is tailored to fit children. We offer more than a dozen types of imaging tests, including:

  • Barium enema – This test shows how the large intestine is working
  • Bone scan – Using special camera equipment, a bone scan detects problems in the bones such as fractures, infections or other conditions
  • CT (computed tomography) scanCT scans use x-rays and a computer to create images of the body that help diagnose conditions like tumors, head injuries, and bone abnormalities. It’s a non-invasive test commonly used for the spine and brain
  • DEXA (dual energy X-ray absorptiometry) scan – Using an X-ray procedure, a DEXA scan helps measure the strength of a patient’s bones by determining bone density
  • Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI)fMRI measures brain activity by detecting changes in blood flow, which is coupled with neuronal activation. It’s because when a part of the brain is in use, blood flow to that region increases. This technique helps understand brain function
  • GE reflux (milk scan) – This test determines if your child has food or milk coming up from the stomach, known as reflux
  • Interventional Radiology (IR)Interventional radiology (IR) performs minimally invasive procedures using radiologic imaging guidance to treat conditions such as blocked arteries, cancer, fibroids, aneurysms, strokes, and varicose veins that once required open surgery
  • Magnetic Source Imaging (MSI) or Magnetoencephalography (MEG)Magnetoencephalography (MEG) maps brain activity by recording magnetic fields produced by electrical currents in the brain using sensitive magnetometers. It can help locate the area causing epileptic seizures
  • MRI (magnetic resonance imaging)An MRI uses a magnetic field and radio waves to create images of organs and structures inside the body, especially soft tissue. It can detect brain damage, locate tumors, and monitor their progression. It’s commonly used for brain and spinal cord imaging.
  • Nuclear MedicineNuclear medicine uses cameras to detect low-level radioactive substances that are collected in specific body parts and emit gamma ray signals to diagnose a variety of diseases, including cancer, heart disease, and neurological disorders
  • PACS (Picture Archiving and Communication System)PACS is an imaging technology that stores, retrieves, manages, distributes, and presents medical images electronically, allowing multiple specialists to view the same image remotely. It’s a time-saving tool with an average report turnaround time of 22 minutes
  • Radionuclide cystogram (RNC) – By inserting a catheter into the bladder, this test determines how well the lower urinary tract is working
  • Renogram – Using special camera equipment, this test looks at kidney function
  • UltrasoundUltrasound uses high-frequency sound waves to create real-time images of soft tissues, blood vessels, and organs without exposing the patient to radiation. It’s commonly used to examine the abdomen and monitor fetal development during pregnancy.
  • Upper gastrointestinal series (UGI) – This test examines how the esophagus, stomach and small intestine are working.
  • Video fluoroscope swallow – This test is done to check for problems with swallowing that may interfere with eating or drinking.
  • Voiding cystourethrogram (VCUG) for boys – This test measures how well the bladder and urethra are working in boys.
  • Voiding cystourethrogram (VCUG) for girls – This test measures how well the bladder and urethra are working in girls.
  • X-Ray/FluoroscopyX-rays and fluoroscopy are non-invasive medical imaging techniques that help doctors see inside the body to diagnose conditions like bone fractures, tumors, infections, and blood clots.

As an organization dedicated to family-centered care, we also offer many child and family services and resources, like interpretive services.


At Children’s Minnesota, we know how important reliable information about conditions and illnesses is.

About medical imaging: 

Medical imaging generally refers to the technique and process of creating visual representations of the interior of a body for clinical analysis and medical intervention. It is a unique science that utilizes cutting-edge technology to reveal internal structures hidden by the skin and bones, as well as to diagnose and treat disease. Medical imaging also serves to establish a database of normal anatomy and physiology to make it possible to identify abnormalities. 


An xray shows an image of dense substances within the human body. These are primarily bones. However, x-rays can also be useful for spotting tumors, infections and some blood clots. Fluoroscopy is similar to x-ray, but allows the viewer to obtain real-time moving images of internal structures. X-ray and fluoroscopy are invaluable diagnostic tools for medical professionals. They allow doctors to see inside a person without resorting to invasive procedures. 

Computed Tomography (CT)

CT scan is a noninvasive diagnostic imaging test that uses x-rays and a computer to create images of the body. It allows your doctor to view areas such as your spine or brain in slices, as if it were sliced layer-by-layer and a picture taken of each slice. This test can help diagnose tumors, hemorrhages, head injuries, and bone abnormalities. Inside the CT machine, the x-ray tube circles around the patient taking pictures as it rotates. These slices can be viewed two-dimensionally or added back together to create a three-dimensional image of a body structure.